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Making The New Year Count
December 31, 2006

Midlife Wisdom For Men Issue #073, December 31, 2006

=========== TABLE OF CONTENTS ==========

· Saw Palmetto and Prostate Disorders

· Move Toward The Goals You Care About In 2007

· There Is Still Time To Play Santa (Especially To Yourself)


Written by Noel McNaughton (c) copyright 2006


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Welcome to this issue of Midlife Wisdom for Men.

This is the last issue of 2006. I hope this past year has been good for you, and that the coming year is even better.

If you are in the midst of a difficult time (say a tough midlife transition), hang in there, and know with certainty that this too shall pass. The only unknown is how soon.

I went through five years of little-to-no income (churned through all my retirement savings), and mild depression during my early fifties, and at the start of every year, I wondered when the struggle was going to end.

I began to 'emerge' at about age 56, and now, at 61, my life has never felt better.

Here is an old Celtic blessing I echo for you in 2007:

God keep you safe,
God keep you warm
God keep you and
yours from all harm.
May He bless your
kith and kin,
the hearth, the house
and all within.

There are about 970 words in the articles in this newsletter, which should take you about three and a half minutes to read.

All the best for the Christmas season, and many blessings in the New Year,



Saw Palmetto and Prostate Disorders

Chances are you have begun to experience some symptoms of an enlarged prostate, aka 'benign prostatic hyperplasia' or BPH. In other words, you are going to pee more often in the middle of the night, it takes longer to get started, and you can't seem to completely empty your bladder. Saw palmetto, which I take every day, is among the top ten most popular botanical remedies sold in the US. More than two dozen studies have shown that saw palmetto can help relieve the symptoms of BPH, but last February a study in The New England Journal of Medicine said it wasn't effective after all.

That seemed to contradict previous research, in which 3139 men from twenty one randomized trials lasting four to forty eight weeks showed that saw palmetto provides mild to moderate improvement in enlarged prostate symptoms. In fact it produced similar improvement to the drug finasteride, but finasteride produced adverse side effects. (Saw palmetto can have some side effects, with some men, such as mild digestive upset, but none that any study found to be significant.)

Mark Blumenthal, founder and executive director of the American Botanical Council (ABC), an independent, non-profit educational organization, says the recent trial really did not contradict previous clinical research on saw palmetto for BPH. Earlier studies focused on men with mild to moderate symptoms. This study was with men having moderate to severe symptoms. According to Blumenthal, when researchers studied men with more severe symptoms, they should have raised the dosage too, but they didn't.

As far as he is concerned, the scientific evidence overwhelmingly supports the notion that saw palmetto remains a safe and effective choice for BPH.

An interesting side note is that in the study reported by the New England Journal of Medicine, the placebo group had twice as many side effects as the group taking saw palmetto, and some side effects in the placebo group were 'seriously adverse'. Blumenthal wonders whether this means the men in the study had other health problems that interfered with the treatment of their swollen prostates.

If you want to read more about it, go here: ABC comments on saw palmetto study

Another scientist-blogger is critical of the way the study was designed. "Abel Pharmboy" says they didn't even identify what they were looking for. More data here: Abel Pharmboy Blog

At any rate, I will continue to take saw palmetto twice a day, as suggested by earlier studies. I have been taking it now for about five months, and although the changes in my symptoms are not dramatic, I think I do have to pee just a bit less often, and that is good enough for me :-)


"If in the last few years you haven't discarded a major opinion or acquired a new one, check your pulse. You may be dead." Gelett Burgess


Move Toward The Goals You Care About In 2007

Long ago I read a direct-marketing ad for a book called "Lazy Man's Way To Riches". The ad was so good, I talked a co-worker into sharing the cost with me, and we bought the book. It was about direct marketing, and it set me off in a whole new direction in my life. It was well worth the ten bucks we paid.

The last line in the ad was what 'pushed me over the edge'. It said something along the lines of 'six months from now, you could be on your way to living the life of your dreams, or you could just be six months older. You decide.'

I suppose what that line told me was that I was getting older anyway, so I might as well start taking some action toward what I really wanted to do.

Another book that helped move me forward was How To Get Control Of Your Time And Your Life by Alan Lakein. Lakein's book has a 'lifetime goal-setting' exercise in it that Elizabeth and I still do every New Years day.

It helps us remind ourselves of what our important goals are, and clarify which ones we will actually do something about in the coming year. It takes less than half an hour, and I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to move toward achieving what they want in life, rather than just being twelve months older come next January.

If you want to do it, go to Scroll down till you come to 'Lifetime Goal Setting', copy and print it, with an extra for your spouse, and go to it. You'll be glad you did!


Did you hear what the dyslexic Highway Patrolman did on New Year's?

He spent the whole night handing out I.U.D.'s ====================================

There Is Still Time To Play Santa (Especially To Yourself)

2-for-1 Special Till January 3rd On The Website Package I Use Site BuildIt Christmas Special

If you are like a great many middle-aged men, you would like to retire pretty soon, but can't quite afford it. What you need is a bit extra to make it work. Or maybe a whole bunch extra (why think small?)

Sitesell is the company with the website business system I use for, and believe me, there is far more to it than the simple hosting most companies provide. In fact I have a friend who pays $5000 per year for web hosting, plus a bunch of tools for building a website, but that price doesn't even include a webmaster. She has to build her site herself!.

Site BuildIt would give her more tools than she gets from her web host, at less than 1/10th (yes one tenth) the cost.

I know I have talked about this before, but having a website just seems so right for guys our age.

Don't know what your site could be about? Watch the 'whole story' about how to build a website with Site BuildIt.

If you are willing to spend about fifteen minutes watching a simple presentation that gives you ideas for a theme for your own site, tells you everything about the formula for successful websites, and shows you what tools are provided, you might see how you can have some fun, and shorten up the time to retirement. Here is the link: Sitesell Video Tour

Got a family member (spouse, child, nephew, neice), or a buddy who would like to build a site too? (I bought an extra one a couple of years ago, split the two-for-one price with a friend, and use mine to build a website for my wife's psychology practice: Elizabeth Atherton-Reid

(Forgive me?) Six months from nw, you could be on your way to having some fun, and making some extra income. Or you could just be six months older:


A New Year’s Prayer - Anonymous

Dear Lord, please give me…
A few friends who understand me and remain my friends;
A work to do which has real value,
without which the world would be the poorer;
A mind unafraid to travel, even though the trail be not blazed;
An understanding heart;
A sense of humour;
Time for quiet, silent meditation;
A feeling of the presence of God;
The patience to wait for the coming of these things,
With the wisdom to recognize them when they come.


I do this newsletter and host the website as a service to other men, and am happy to do so. Just the same, it costs some money, and if you would like to make a small contribution to help with those costs, I would really appreciate it. If you would like, you can make a donation at:


Wouldn't it be great to work less and play more golf? I do not of a better way to earn a part-time income, than a simple information Web site. I encourage you to check out You'll be amazed at how you can turn YOUR hobby into online income.


The Mankind Project

The ManKind Project® offers trainings which support men in developing lives of integrity, accountability, and connection to feeling. Our trainings challenge men to develop their abilities as leaders, fathers, and elders as ways of offering their deepest gifts in service to the world.

The ManKind Project's New Warrior Training Adventure® is an intense, transformative men's initiation which invites men to forge a deep conscious connection between head and heart. The NWTA offers men a powerful, challenging opportunity to look at all aspects of their lives in a richly supportive environment.


Got your copy of Picking Up The Burning Feather yet? It will help you on your spiritual journey.

Just go to Picking Up The Burning Feather: A Spiritual Guide For Midlife Men.


Just For You: A Free Do-It-Yourself Retirement Planning Report

If you are a new subscriber to this newsletter, you will recall I promised you a link to a secret page on the Midlife Men's site where you can download a free 27-page report on 'DIY Retirement planning' by George Slater.

Welcome to the newsletter, and for your free report, go to: DIY Retirement E-Report , and follow the instructions.




A Destroyer of Compasses by Wade Bell, published by Guernica Editions, (Toronto, Buffalo and Lancaster UK) $15.00 Cdn

One Man's Mid-Life Crisis Led to Spain. Planning to spend six weeks, he stayed five years.

A book of stories the Toronto Globe & Mail called "an assured and sensual portrait of a culture" with "precise and ironic examples of human idiosyncracy." The review went on to call stories "gems."

Available from Amazon, E-Bay and local bookstores.

I Need Your Questions and Feedback!

Got comments? Questions? I'd love to hear from you.

Just email your suggestions and/or questions to . I look forward to hearing from you. And thanks.


Well friend, that's it for now. Again, if you enjoyed this and/or found it useful, and know of anyone else who might like it, please pass it forward. And if you have questions or recommendations, I would love to hear from you.

All the best, Noel

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